Shape Connect Plan
The sequence tells a story. The sequence took a decade to figure out. It works, when followed, and may not be necessary. And, drive determines outcomes.
The goal of Shape Connect is to be able to strum and change chords. This is a beginner thing, so its good for everyone.
Often, the necessary chord connections of a basic song can provide us with the chords we learn first. This method can work – it is the lottery form – sometimes it goes well, at other times, it stifles…one difficult change can bring down the process.
A single song should not determine whether students stay with playing (I often see this). And, there are simplifications of everything, so an important song can get a treatment, but it might just not sound exactly right (like the recording). Playing to audio is a solution.
Another option is a chord learning system like this one…sequenced, planned, & specific. CC challenges fingers in a specific order in two different chord tracks. There are also extra bits of data along the way (will be expanded, accepting and will place media).
The method: 2 chords back and forth until you have it. I’ve seen track one done in 20 minutes to 1 year, for absolute starters. With older students, at about month 3 or 4, however, drive can drop off. I often use both, concurrently, or even start with track 2 for certain students.
If a student can do all of these changes within 1 or 2 months, the track is set. Teachers can put their spin on each change [changing elements, renewed fingerings or revoicings, weight, songs, patterns, etc.].
Fretting a chord is the consequence of correct travel. A chord change is the transition between chords. When we are about to fret a chord, we are most often coming from a different chord, and sometimes from a mute or even nothing. To be successful at making the connection, we program motion through space, in time. We even use slow motion to program the exact travel path.
So, our job is to focus and make the connections between chords. We will work with pairs of chords, back and forth, until we know that we have it. For each change we ask, what does this chord change take? What’s staying? What’s moving? What exactly do my fingers need to do to make a change happen?
When we do this enough, with enough changes, we can play any change. Keep in mind that the strumming hand should never stop while training chord changes. Stop strumming and learn the change, then add the strumming back.
Proof You Have What It Takes
What we need is proof through success. If we can play [synchronize] the first 2 changes of Track One (a lift/land & an add/sub), this is proof that we can be a reliable rhythm players.
Synchronization with the steady strumming motor, is our goal. The sounds we hear may not be perfect at the beginning. We clarify the tonal quality of each chord over time. Focus on syncing the movement, first. The sounds will clarify with experience and stronger hands.
Track One is built for absolute success.
Track Two provides more challenging changes, but still has some easy ones as well. Two’s starter group can also be a solid starting point for most beginners. When you can play the changes in the first group [G, Cadd9, D, Em], you can play 1000′s of songs. The simplified fingerings for this group are very common.